Haru Ishii is a japanese artista born in Tokyo, who had her first contact with azulejo in 995, when she came to Portugal and experienced during a month the traditional Portuguese art in a worshop in Palmela.

Since then, that is, for twenty one years now, Ishii has dedicated all her creativity to azulejo, that became her way of life.

Conceiving the works of art in Tokyo, and more recently in Kioto where she moved to, Ishii gathers the commissions she receives from Japanese clients and comes to execute them in Portugal in Palmela, at the Fortuna Space. With accurate research and experimentation, Ishii acquired, over her many years of activity with the production of azulejo, the most occult secrets of this traditional Portuguese art, to recreate and reinvent them, in a Japanese language, using her cultural roots.

With her public art displayed in many Japanese cities from Tokyo to Kioto, from Shimane to Hiroshima, from Kochi to Okayma, between so many others and beyond several collections, Ishii presents at The National Tile Museum in Lisbon, an exhibition that sinthetyses the Portuguese – Japanese relations for 474 years.

The works are divided in two rooms.

In the first one, she clames her niponic origins filled with water, where this is a key element - the sea, the rain that nourishes the green forests, the diet based on fish, the culture, as the tea ceremony – materializes her roots, all between shadows.

In a second room, more alive and full of light, Ishii remembers the Portuguese – Japanese historical bonds, so well represented in Namban screens, recovering the voyage of Portuguese vessels between continents, throughout the seas, surpassing winds and tides, to bring to the Ocident what more exhotic and refined the Japan offered.

The volumes containing these values, those merchandises, Ishii “ throws” them in a third space, the “Claustrim” of the Convent da Madre de Deus, where the experiences of more than 470 years are presented.

As a trip so long and perilous, as the experience of Haru Ishii throughout the 21 years of activity, can not be made without the Divine help, the artist offers us, in the sacred space of Coro Alto at the Church, a symbolic pattern evoking the strength of convictions.

Curator : Eduardo Kol de Carvalho